While fashion designers have their own interpretation of suits for the runway, those in the tailoring trade are seeing things a little differently. We talk to two tailors to get their take on the “it” suit of 2019.
Kenny Loh, Lord’s Tailor
Kenny Loh, the creative director of Lord’s Tailor, sees the current year as a return to elegance. He nevertheless, admits that classic looks need to be updated with a more edgy cut to retain appeal.
“It has been some crazy years in menswear. Some are calling it Tailoring 2.0 and others ‘neo-tailoring’ but whatever it is called, I think the classics will always remain, no matter the trends,” he points out.
“We are seeing the prevalence of streetwear style on runways. Malaysian men will also slowly take on the culture of wearing sports jackets or even suits for more smart casual events.”
Lord’s Tailor as a tailoring establishment was founded in 1974. Yet today, it has still stayed relevant and is very much considered as the go-to place for a man’s suiting needs in Kuala Lumpur.
“This year’s colours are quite earthy – like wine, sage green, blush pink and white. But with the bursts of colours the last few years, we do feel that men will be opting for more neutral colours grey and black,” Loh states.
“Striped suits will also be making a comeback. It is often thought of as the ‘grandfather’s suit’, but with the future launch of James Bond 25 and Kingsman 3, stripes will definitely be getting some attention again.”
Charlie Baker-Collingwood, Henry Herbert Tailors
Charlie Baker-Collingwood agrees that the “broken suit” is going to be big. He says that 2018 was all about colours and 2017, the double breasted suit, but those two trends did not stand the test of time.
“This is an Italian concept, where you would, for example, wear a navy jacket with grey trousers. I think people are attempting to do something different for 2019,” Baker-Collingwood explains.
“It’s still elegant. Also very smart and chic, but most importantly, very timeless. People are yearning for the less ordinary and I think having the ‘broken suit’ lets them do this.”
Baker-Collingwood is the founder and head tailor of Henry Herbert Tailors, located at London’s famed Savile Row. His company is known for producing the finest bespoke suits and shirts.
He however believes that slim cut suits will continue to be popular. According to him, men have tried other varieties – slightly wider lapels or looser fit trousers, but they have never really translated into popular demand.
There is a predicted rise in the popularity of mohair and flannel as well. Baker-Collingwood says this is happening in tandem with the change of ideas and attitudes towards fabrics.
“They will also start looking at tweed. Tweed is now very, very popular. But they would want tweed they can wear in a variety of situations. So quite a quiet, conservative tweed,” he adds.